Part of the motivation for creating this website is…motivation! Therefore, in addition to this website, I am planning on getting involved in a number of other ways to help keep myself motivated.
Getting involved with a professional organization will provide me with chances to talk about game development and software development in general. However, they also provide other benefits like discounts on travelling and conferences, insurance, and access to lots of knowledge through people, research papers/articles, and publications. As a note, membership does cost money so these may not be options for everyone.
The first organization is obvious: the International Game Development Association or IGDA. The IGDA has a “local” chapter centered on Washington, D.C., and they also have several Special Interest Groups that a member can join covering various specialities. I haven’t picked out any of those just yet, but I know I’ll be joining more than one!
Two other organizations that apply more generally to programming and development are the ACM and the IEEE. The ACM has a Special Interest Group called SIGGRAPH that is about computer graphics and therefore game development. While the IEEE has a Computer Society that generally relates to computer software and a Computational Intelligence Society that specifically runs the IEEE Conference on Computational Intelligence and Games. I haven’t decided which of these two to get involved with, but chances are that I should just join both and see what I can get out of them.
If you develop games and don’t know what a game jam is, take a moment to educate yourself via Wikipedia. Basically, you create a prototype for a game inside of a single weekend which sounds like a pretty intense experience. I don’t know yet which game jam will be my first, but I am certainly looking forward to participating in one! There is even the possibility that I may be attending my first game jam as one of the organizers. The details are a bit premature at this time, but if it falls into place and happens, expect a much more detailed post all about it! I am just not sure if I will get to actually create a game if I’m helping to host, but it will still serve the purpose of getting involved.
Future MakingVsPlaying Features
The last way that I will talk about getting involved is through this website. Obviously, the website already allows me to share my efforts, but there is more to come! In the future, you can expect to have forums and for these blog posts to be connected to those forums. The forums will be a place where everyone, including myself, can find some motivation and community. Additionally, prototypes that I share will eventually have their source code made open and accessible. The FleaGame will be the first project to have its source code shared — I just need to get around to it and work on the project settings a bit.